The tree is filiation, but the rhizome is alliance, uniquely alliance. The tree imposes the verb “to be,” but the fabric of rhizome is the conjunction “and…and…and” This conjunction carries enough force to shake and uproot the verb “to be.” Where are you going? Where are you coming from? What are you heading for? These are totally useless questions.
Gilles Deleuze and Felix Guattari,
A Thousand Plateaus: Capitalism and Schizophrenia
Gilles Deleuze, arguably the most evasive of the twentieth century European philosophers, has nonetheless enormous impact upon a variety of discourses which, from a conservative paradigm, are not the happy hunting ground of philosophy. His works, in their efforts to break loose from the prison house of conventional thinking, foray into mind-boggling turfs of mathematics, physics, chemistry, biology, biochemistry, cinema, psychoanalysis and literature. He is one of the few philosophers in the world who could, within the space of a book, easily move through the insights of as diverse figures as Henry Bergson, Jacques Monod, Gilbert Simondon, Ilya Prigogine, Ludwig Boltzman, Franz Kafka and Sigmund Freud. The intensity of his thought was such that it provoked a fellow Parisian, Michel Foucault, an intellectual who in his own right overturned our ways of seeing, to make an astonishing speculation that at a later stage in technological human history twentieth century might be known as Deluezian. It was Delueze who, more than anybody else in twentieth century philosophy, enacted a downright libidinal revolution in the tiny space of philosophy and freed it from its illusory anchorage in the metaphysics of truth. In his earlier works, under the ruse of engaging the works of his holy trinity, Spinoza, Bergson and Nietzsche, he had already made a nomadic movement diametrically different and away from the classical philosophy’s esoteric and baffling leap into the transcendent world of God, Man, Truth, Presence, etc. And his later day collaboration with the revolutionary activist, Felix Guattari, inflated his allergy to the pristine world of presence to the entire texture of social reality itself. Now there was this ‘thought’ about the virtual worlds of machines, rhizomes, assemblages, transversal connections, kisses devoid of Hegelian desire, lines of flight, molecular revolutions, hand floating over the flat of a stomach without an ‘I’ and ‘you’ to mediate between them, and…and…and.